Field Day of the Past

| July/August 1995

  • # Picture 01

  • # Picture 01

Gammon P.O. Box 375 Oilville, Virginia 23129

The engines were revved up and running full tilt. The sound on the track where the tractors were lined up, waiting their turns to pull, mingled with the noise from the center of the field. There a constant putt-putt hummed as visitors strolled by taking in the sights.

Occasionally the deep sounds of the steam whistle announced to the crowd the sawmill was sawing boards. The noise from the shingle mill added to the din. All these sounds co-mingled with the smells and sights that proclaimed another Field Day of the Past.

In October, more than 12,000 visitors and guests converged on the rolling hills near Centerville in Goochland County, Virginia, where the third annual Field Day of the Past was being held. Each year this event, sponsored by the Rockville-Centerville Steam & Gas Historical Association, recreates eras from America's past. Antique tractors, trucks, and cars, construction equipment line the field to present an image of the American workplace since the Industrial Revolution.

'Field Day allows those people who worked this equipment and machinery to reminisce about the past,' said Joseph E. Liesfeld, Jr., president of the Association and one of the principal organizers of the event. 'It also teaches the younger generation what happened in agricultural and industrial settings during the years soon after the turn of the century.'

In three years the scope of Field Day of the Past has grown to encompass many phases of American and Virginia history. The first show in 1992 brought together steam and gas engine enthusiasts, allowing them to display their antique engines.